Saturday, July 9, 2016

Fitness Results Update + Work Out Routine + Daily Meal Plan

I've only been on this fitness journey since May 18, 2016, but I have learned so much in the past month-and-a-half. The one thing that really stands out is that we're all going to have bad days once in awhile. For me, that day was yesterday. I was discouraged because I wasn't feeling my muscles working during my workouts. That alone was enough to put negative thoughts in my head. You're not doing it right was a thought that plagued me all day.

It's absolutely true that throughout this journey—or any journey for that matter—you can be your own best friend or your own worst enemy. Yesterday, I was my own worst enemy.

This morning, fortunately, I woke up with a better attitude. I jumped on the scale and saw that I'm still sitting at 194 pound. This, to me, is great! I am 26 pounds lighter than I was in May and that is extremely exciting!

My goal weight, for those of you who don't know, is currently 175. That might change as I tone up, but for now, that's where it stands. For my height (5'7"), that is still considered "overweight" but every body is different and I have a large frame to begin with.

NOTE: I don't usually pay much attention to the number on the scale in terms of progress. I do, however, use it to determine how many calories I'm burning. I weigh myself weekly.

Inches Lost

After checking my weight, I measured my body to see how many inches I've lost. So far, I've lost a total of 8.5 inches. The break down is below:


The fact that I've lost so many inches was exciting to me, but it wasn't over yet. Finally, I decided to take a photograph and compare it side-by-side to one of my earlier photos. That's when I realized just how much progress I've actually made.

Before & After Photos (One Month Difference)



I mean, can you believe the difference? That is a month and a half difference with daily cardio and weekly strength training. However, I must give credit to my diet over the past week for the insane reduction in bloat. My stomach is actually starting to flatten!

Because of how amazing my day has been going and because of how motivated and excited I am, I would like to share with you my meal plan (an example of one day) and my weekly fitness routine.

Let's start with food, shall we?

Eating healthy has always been hard for me, but I promise that if you're eating correctly, you won't go hungry throughout the day. It took me awhile to realize this, but let me explain why.

  1. I wasn't getting enough carbs.
  2. I wasn't getting enough protein.
  3. I was eating most of my calories from fat.

After realizing this, I cut out sugary snacks, high-fat treats (bad fats), and high-calorie energy drinks. I started replacing bad carbs with complex carbs. I started eating more protein and taking in more good fats. I have a daily caloric range of 1600-1800 (with cardio) and I follow it religiously. However, instead of focusing on that number alone, I started paying attention to where my calories were coming from.

40/40/20 Meal Plan

Before I started counting macros, I was always hungry and always craving things that I couldn't have. Luckily, my willpower held out, but I still wanted to figure out why.

Take a look at my diet before I started counting macros—it speaks for itself!


Look at that! The purple is my FAT percentage. I was getting 48.7% of my daily calories from fat! And take a look at my protein percentage! No wonder my muscles would ache every day! I wasn't getting nearly enough, especially with the amount of exercise I was completing.

Fortunately, I was able to talk to a few of my sources to see what was going wrong. That's when I started reading about macros and learning what foods I should be eating—and what to avoid.

Now, my goal is to get 40% of my calories from carbs, 40% from protein, and 20% from fat.


This plan allows me to eat like a normal human being (no rabbit food for this girl) while giving me enough energy to get through my workouts and enough protein to properly recover. The fats are good fats—coconut oil, fish, quality cheese, etc. No trans fats for me!


The 40/40/20 is ideal for me, but I'm not super strict about it. My diet actually averages 46/32/22, but that's good enough for me, especially when you consider how I was eating before.

Want to know what I'm eating to stay within this range? Check out the meal plan example that I've hashed out for you!

Daily Meal Plan (Example)

Please note, this meal above was made
with 4 servings of Egg Beaters Egg Whites.
It was way too much for me to eat in one sitting, but
in my opinion, tastes better than actual egg whites.

1869 Calories // 42% Carbs // 37% Protein // 21% Fat

Breakfast

  • 4 egg whites
  • 1/2 cup nonfat cottage cheese
  • 1/2 cup chopped tomatoes
  • 1/2 cup chopped mushrooms
  • 1/2 cup chopped onions

Lunch

  • 1 gluten-free ciabatta roll
  • 2 oz turkey breast
  • 1 cup spinach
  • 1 tbsp flax seed
  • 1 tbsp fat-free dressing
  • 1 oz feta cheese

Dinner

  • 3 oz honey mustard chicken
  • 1/2 cup brown rice
  • 1/2 cup broccoli, steamed
  • 1/2 cup black beans
  • 2 slices tomato, medium

Snack(s) + Vitamins

  • 1 cup nonfat Greek vanilla yogurt
  • 5 strawberries, large
  • 1 cup vanilla almond milk
  • 1 scoop whey protein
  • 1 large hard boiled egg
  • Centrum Daily Multivitamin for Women
  • Biotin


Workout Week

Cardio is probably my favorite part of exercising because I'm so used to it by now. I've been doing 30 minutes or more of cardio everyday since May 18, 2016. I complete strength training three times a week. To see my full workout plan, see below:

Daily


Monday

  • Chest

    • I work my chest by doing dumbbell flies with 3-5 lb dumbbells, push ups, and plank rotations (no weights). 12 Reps, 2 Sets (each)

  • Triceps


    • I work my triceps with tricep dips and overhead tricep extension with dumbbells or a resistance band. Sometimes I'll add in a seated dumbbell extension or a dumbbell tricep kick back. You can also do close-grip push-ups but I cannot do these very well just yet. 12 Reps, 2 Sets (each)

  • Shoulders

    • To work my shoulders, I do side lateral raises with dumbbells and bent-over raises with dumbbells. 12 Reps, 2 Sets (each)

Wednesday

  • Biceps

    • To train my biceps, I do door frame rows, dumbbell deadlifts, and regular ol' bicep curls with 5 lb dumbbells. 12 Reps, 2 Sets (each)

  • Back

    • To work my back, I do "superman" routines, bent over rows, and general yoga stretching for the upper and lower back. 12 Reps, 2 Sets (each) - 10 Minutes Yoga

Friday

  • Legs

    • My legs usually feel like jello after working out (except last week) so I usually know when I get a good workout in. For legs, I do lunges, high-knees, and plank jumps (although I am very limited on the plank jumps right now). 12 Reps, 2 Sets (each)

  • Glutes

    • I think this is my favorite body part to work because I want a booty so badly. :) For this area of my body, I do donkey kicks (with a resistance band), squats (with or without dumbbells), bridges, and side raises. 12 Reps, 2 Sets (each)

What about core workouts?

You may have noticed that I don't mention core exercises up there. I do, however, work my core. My core is tight during planks, push-ups, squats, and any other strength training exercise that I do. I also work my core during cardio on my exercise bike (flex, release, flex, release). Once I week, I will work core exercises in, whether it's core strength stretches or regular ab crunches.

For some workouts, I use 3 pound or 5 pound weights, but most of the time, I use the resistance bands and the resistance band bar. For stretching, my husband picked up a yoga mat for me so that I'm not slipping and sliding all over the floor while planking, doing push-ups, and stretching.


Well, that about covers everything with my meal plan and fitness routine. If you have any questions, feel free to send me a message!



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